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Last Update on August 30th 2023 By TPS

Information & Guides

Naval gazing - A guide to the different types of belly button piercings

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Navel piercings, also known as belly button piercings, have become a popular choice for those looking to adorn their midriffs with stylish jewelry. With various types of navel piercings to choose from, each offering its own unique aesthetic, it's essential to understand the options before making your decision. In this guide, we'll delve into the different types of navel piercings, their characteristics, and what to consider when choosing one, along with some fascinating facts to pique your interest, an exploration of common jewelry designs, and insights into how long you can typically retain a navel piercing.

Belly button piercing types

1. Standard Navel Piercing: The most common type, this piercing is done through the upper rim of the navel. A single piece of jewelry, such as a curved barbell, is inserted through the hole, showcasing a charming adornment just above the navel.

2. Inverse Navel Piercing: Also known as "top-down" or "bottom-up," this piercing enters from the top of the navel and exits at the bottom. The jewelry rests beneath the skin, creating a unique and subtle look.

3. Double Navel Piercing: For those seeking a bit more flair, double navel piercings involve having two separate holes, allowing for two pieces of jewelry to be worn side by side. This style offers an opportunity for creativity by combining different jewelry types.

4. Floating Navel Piercing: Floating piercings sit within the surface of the skin rather than being anchored through the navel's rim. They create an illusion of jewelry "floating" within the skin and are often chosen for their distinctive look.

5. Multiple Navel Piercings: For the bold and adventurous, multiple navel piercings involve creating a cluster of piercings around the navel area. This style allows for a customizable arrangement of jewelry for a striking effect.

6. Dermal Navel Piercing: This advanced technique involves placing dermal anchor implants beneath the skin, allowing for creative placement of jewelry on or near the navel. It's a more intricate process that requires expertise.


Choosing the Right Navel Piercing:
  • Anatomy: Consider your navel's shape, size, and depth, as different types of piercings suit various navel structures.

  • Lifestyle: Think about your daily activities and clothing choices; certain types of piercings may be more practical.

  • Healing Time: Healing times vary between types; some may require more time due to their complexity.


Some key call outs for aftercare and healing naval piercings:
  • Cleaning: Follow proper aftercare instructions, which usually involve saline solutions and avoiding harsh chemicals.

  • Clothing: Opt for loose clothing that won't rub against the piercing during the healing process.

  • Hygiene: Keep the area clean and dry, and avoid touching the piercing with unclean hands.


Cultural Significance and Aesthetics

Navel piercings have cultural significance in different parts of the world. Some cultures consider them decorative, while others attribute spiritual meanings to them.

Some reasons why may have the wrong anatomy for belly piercing or its rejecting the belly piercing

The following has a higher probability of rejecting the belly piercing and causing infection, and other problems  resulting from having your belly piercing.

  • Outie belly buttons: Belly button piercing with an outie can be problematic. This is because the skin is too thin and there is insufficient room behind the navel for the jewelry to fit comfortably, outie belly buttons are unfortunately not suited for belly piercings.

  • Navels with a deep fold: Deeply folded navels may not be a good candidate for belly piercings because the jewelry may rub against the fold and aggravate the hole. 

  • Navels with a lot of scar tissue: A belly piercing may not be good for a navel with a lot of scar tissue since the scar tissue is less likely to heal effectively. 

  • Navels that are too small or too large: Unsuitable for belly piercings are navels that are either too little or too large because the jewelry may not fit properly. Look to get different jewelry to see if it fixes the problem.


Some interesting facts about Navel Piercings and belly button rings

  1. Navel piercings have been practiced for centuries, with roots in ancient Egyptian and Roman cultures.

  2. Supermodel Christy Turlington's navel piercing sparked a trend in the 90s.

  3. Healing time varies from 6 months to a year, depending on the type of piercing.

  4. Pregnancy can affect navel piercings, causing migration or stretching.

  5. Navel piercings are versatile, accommodating various jewelry styles, from curved barbells to captive bead rings.

  6. They're commonly chosen by individuals who want a discreet yet alluring body piercing.

  7. Some yoga practices and clothing styles may require temporary jewelry removal.

  8. The type of navel piercing you can get depends on your anatomy and navel shape.

  9. Navel piercings are often considered a form of self-expression and body positivity.

  10. Celebrities like Beyoncé and Scarlett Johansson have sported navel piercings, influencing pop culture trends.


Here are some common Jewelry Designs for Navel Piercings

  1. Curved Barbell

  2. Captive Bead Ring

  3. Dangle Belly Rings

  4. Crystal or Gemstone Embellished Jewelry

  5. Heart or Star Shaped Jewelry

  6. Hoop or Hinged Rings

  7. Custom Shapes and Designs

  8. Tribal or Ethnic Inspired Pieces

  9. Navel Shields and Covers

  10. Multi-Strand or Chain Jewelry


A full range of jewelry can be found here.

Common questions for belly button piercings

Can I change my belly piercing after 1 month?

After a month, it is not advised to change your belly piercing. Changing the jewelry too soon after a belly button piercing might raise the risk of infection and other issues. Belly button piercings can take anywhere between 6 and 12 months to fully heal.

Your piercing may appear to be healed on the outside, but the inner tissues may still be delicate and prone to injury. Altering the jewelry may also aggravate the piercing and delay healing.

It is advisable to have a trained piercer change your belly piercing for you if you need to for medical reasons, such as for an MRI. The danger of difficulties will be reduced and the jewelry can be changed safely.

You should carefully examine the dangers and benefits if you plan to change your belly piercing after a month. It is recommended to err on the side of caution and wait until your piercing is entirely healed if you are unclear whether it is.

Following are some indicators that it might not be time to get your belly piercing changed:

  • It is still sore, red, or swollen.

  • It is discharging something of any type.

  • It is scabbed or crusted.

  • It is inflamed or itchy.

  • The jewelry is tough to shift without hurting.


It is advised to wait until your piercing has fully healed if you suffer any of these symptoms before switching out the jewelry. You can safely switch out the jewelry and enjoy your piercing for many years if you are patient and wait until your belly piercing is fully healed.

Can i go swimming 3 months after belly button piercing?

How long should you wait to swim after belly piercing is a very common question. It's generally recommended to wait at least six weeks. Three months after receiving a belly button piercing, you can usually go swimming without any problems, although you should still exercise caution.

The following advice is for swimming when having a belly button piercing:

  • Before and after swimming, clean your piercing. To clean the area around your piercing, use a saline solution or a little bit of light soap and water.

  • Do not swim in lakes, rivers, or the ocean. These water sources can have bacteria and other impurities that could irritate your piercing and cause an infection.

  • Make sure the chlorine levels are within safe ranges if you are swimming in a pool. The healing process might be slowed down by chlorine, which can irritate your piercing.

  • Take only brief swims. The chance of infection increases the longer your piercing is submerged in water.

  • Put on a water-resistant bandage to shield your piercing. This will keep the area dry and clean.

  • After swimming, make sure to carefully clean your piercing. Get in touch with your piercer if you suffer any pain or redness there.


The whole healing process for belly button piercings can take up to a year, which is another vital detail. Even though your piercing appears to be healed after three months, it is still crucial to exercise caution and take safety measures when swimming.

What are the belly button piercing healing stages?

Piercing aftercare is an essential part of the piercing process and its important to understand the healing process.

First stage: the initial days

The area around your belly button will be red, puffy, and sore for the first few days after getting pierced. Additionally, some bleeding and bruising may occur. For the duration of this period, it's crucial to frequently clean your piercing to avoid infection.

Weeks 1-4 of Stage 2

The redness and swelling around your piercing will start to go down throughout weeks one through four. Additionally, you might observe that a crust or scab develops around the piercing. This is typical and will eventually disappear by itself. During this time, it's crucial to keep frequently cleaning your piercing.

Weeks 5-8 of Stage 3

Your piercing should be almost healed by weeks 8–12. The crust or scab ought to have come off, and the swelling and redness ought to have subsided. Although there may still be some soreness surrounding the piercing, it should not be severe. During this time, it's crucial to keep frequently cleaning your piercing.

Months 3 to 6 of Stage 4

Within three to six months, your belly button piercing ought to be entirely healed. But for at least six months after getting your piercing, it's crucial to keep cleaning it regularly. This will keep your piercing clean and maintain its aesthetic quality.

Talk to your piercer if you have any questions about how your belly button piercing will heal. They'll be able to provide you with individualized guidance and work with you to make sure your piercing heals properly.

Do people keep their belly button piercings?

The average duration people retain a navel piercing varies widely, ranging from a few years to decades. Proper aftercare, jewelry quality, and individual factors play a role. Some may choose to remove or change jewelry but keep the piercing open even after years.

Does weight changes impact naval piercings?

Weight changes, whether it's gain or loss, can affect your navel piercing in several ways. Your navel area contains skin, tissue, and even underlying muscle. When you experience weight fluctuations, the skin stretches or contracts accordingly, which can impact the position of your piercing and even the appearance of your jewelry. This is no more evident than during pregnancy. It's possible to maintain your piercings through the entire pregnancy, but you will need to consider the type of jewelry your wear during this time.   

Final Thoughts

Navel piercings which are commonly known as belly button piercings offer a wide array of choices, allowing you to express your style and personality. Whether you opt for a standard piercing or a more intricate dermal option, careful consideration and proper aftercare will help you enjoy your new adornment to the fullest. Always prioritize safety and seek advice from experienced piercers to make an informed decision.

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